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Promise vs. experience on Hell's Kitchen [Spoilers]

m
maisonbistro Jul 8, 2008 07:06 PM

Do you agree with Gordon's choice?

Considering that none of the previous winners are still at their "won" post, does promise really mean anything? Not sure.

Both Petrozza and Christina seemed flustered at times, and both had "issues" with teammates - I'm not sure who I would have picked.

I do think that out of all the seasons' winners Christina probably does show the most promise.

Gordon, lay off the tanning beds with the little glasses- I've told you before, in some shots you have raccoon eyes and look like a bufoon. I still love ya though.

See you guys when Hell's Kitchen 5 starts!!

  1. bigmackdaddy Jul 8, 2008 07:14 PM

    Going by the television edits I would have gone with Petrozza, especially for his better menu. However, seeing Christina handle Matt is no small feat. I figured her youth also put her on top as well. Although I'm not sure I understand Ramsay's comment on her "promise" considering Petrozza showed he could learn and adapt as well. But like I always say I can only go by what the editor leaves on the tape,

    1 Reply
    1. re: bigmackdaddy
      f
      fishfry Jul 8, 2008 07:38 PM

      I feel sorry for Petrozza. Ramsey is looking for a buzz and who would you rather look at at Petrozza or Christina? The job means very little , she won't last more than a year, but the $250,000 payout is the real prize.

    2. LindaWhit Jul 8, 2008 07:25 PM

      Yes, I agree with his choice. I kind of expected it....the seasons have gone boy/girl/boy for the winners, so I expected Christina to win. Plus, I think the "promise" you speak of in your title is something that Chef Ramsay's staff can build on in London-West Hollywood.

      And I think if Christina had gotten stuck with Jen, Jen would have done even worse than she did for Petrozza. Jen continuing to say "I don't know what Chef was thinking not putting me in the Final 2!" Boy, talk about sabotage - I cannot see anyone wanting to have worked for her if she DID make it in the Final 2! And yet again - that puss on her face, all bent out of shape, because she was pissed she wasn't there. She really must not have *any* clue that potential employers would look at her attitude all season and say "yeah, I'm going to pass on dealing with that!"

      I thought Christina did a great job of boosting up Matt's self-esteem after he was last picked by saying she counted on him to make his great risotto (didn't he only do that once? LOL) But no surprise that he screwed it up on some of the stuff he had to cook. WTH is with him mouthing off? Both Jen and Matt are just complete idiots.

      1. b
        burlgurl Jul 8, 2008 07:53 PM

        Am I wrong in thinking that the prize money isn't given in cash, rather invested into Ramsay's restaurant project to make them a partner??
        I thought this is what he said on Rachel Ray this morning..

        1. hellpaso Jul 8, 2008 09:29 PM

          i am disgusted with chef ramsay's decision. and the fact that he made the comment that he was "looking for the long-term". that smacks of ageism. i am 47 as petrozza is--i will no longer watch this show, or patronize his restaurants.

          1 Reply
          1. re: hellpaso
            d
            Docsknotinn Jul 9, 2008 04:18 AM

            I'm 46. While I respect your view boy do I ever dissagree. Petrozza is an old dog that can't seem to learn a new trick and he works like a slob. He may be a great guy that every one likes but he did not handle his crew at all. Christina did a much better job. Consider the way Christina manged Mattie the moron Vs how P let Jen run him. While Christina had a couple of plates returned P never preped properly (did you see that scribbled mess he suggested posting on the fridge?) and becuase he failed to prep they ran out of two dishes!
            Christina won fair and square. She is straight out of culinary school and has far more potential based on the way she has progressed in the course of the show.
            However I do agree that P's menu was light years ahead of Christinas.
            The souffles looked perfect.

          2. c
            charlestonfoodiegal Jul 8, 2008 09:59 PM

            Christina did hold the most promise. I'm glad she won, b/c Petrozza deserves better. Ramsay's ruining his rep. w/ this show.

            1 Reply
            1. re: charlestonfoodiegal
              l
              Leonardo Jul 8, 2008 10:10 PM

              Totally on board with "hell". Petrozza showed both "promise" AND "experience". "Long term" and "promise" are code words for ageism. I too am disgusted. P showed growth, creativity, that he is adventurous with menus, and can get results from his crew. Christina had multiple dishes returned and her menu was boring, not to mention her repeated poor performance working stations in previous shows.

            2. karmalaw Jul 8, 2008 10:30 PM

              I disagree with the OP -- I think Christina just shows how much more she needs to learn. Petrozza is in the stage of fine-tuning -- Christina is in the stage of still getting chef's and life's basics down.

              Petrozza's food has pretty consistently been better than Christina's -- it shows more depth and flavor -- and more creativity. I certainly would be happy to order from a menu he created -- Christina's would be a menu that would make me wonder why I went to the effort to go there as opposed to anywhere else with the same plain-jane menu.

              I feel that the way Petrozza worked with the designer should have been something considered -- rather than having created issues (Christina with her put downs of the wait-staff uniforms and the "I didn't know the striped swatch would end up being stripes" debacle), he was pleasant while still getting what he wanted.

              Christina has a lot of growing up to do -- and I guess Gordon Ramsey wants to spend $250,000 watching her do it for a year.

              6 Replies
              1. re: karmalaw
                MMRuth Jul 9, 2008 04:00 AM

                I was surprised that Ramsey said he liked Petrozza's decor - it looked like "glamorous" B&B style to me, with that floral wallpaper, fussy little chairs and what appeared to me to be fake flowers on the mantle.

                1. re: MMRuth
                  LindaWhit Jul 9, 2008 09:58 AM

                  Perhaps GR liked it because it fit wtih Petrozza's more upscale menu? But I was surprised at the fussy chairs and floral wallpaper.

                  And once the stripe issues were corrected, I really liked Christina's restaurant - very clean and simple.

                  1. re: LindaWhit
                    goodhealthgourmet Jul 9, 2008 01:32 PM

                    i'm with you, linda. i liked christina's restaurant. very warm, modern & classy. i know taste is subjective, but i personally thought petrozza's decor was pretty ugly. i adore exposed brick, but the wallpaper & flowers were just not attractive at all...and the hearth of that fireplace looked like black marble, which definitely didn't make sense with the other textiles he chose.

                  2. re: MMRuth
                    Miss Needle Jul 9, 2008 01:37 PM

                    His decor was very reminiscent of Hubert Keller's Fleur dy Lys in SF. For the Top Chef fans, it was the first restaurant in Top Chef Season 1. Very ornate and oppressive looking. Not my style, but I can see some people digging it.

                    1. re: Miss Needle
                      MMRuth Jul 9, 2008 01:39 PM

                      You're right - I ate there once many years ago, though I think Keller's decor had a certain over the top je ne sais quoi that saved it from being upscale B&B decor!

                      1. re: MMRuth
                        Miss Needle Jul 9, 2008 01:45 PM

                        I was there last year so it may have been different from when you were there. Keller's decor was a bit more intimate with the fabric ceiling which went with the whole ornate decor and kind of made you feel like you were in a velvet-draped jewelry box. But Petrozza had a space with super high ceilings. The look Petrozza was going for just can't be properly executed with the space that he was given.

                        Upscale B&B is quite the fitting term.

                2. bigmackdaddy Jul 9, 2008 03:40 AM

                  I sure would love to see the comments written by the participating diners. There were 26 total am I right? The comments might tell more to the story than the edits.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: bigmackdaddy
                    s
                    sibeats Jul 9, 2008 05:45 AM

                    Each chef had 13 tables in their half of the restaurant with 50 diners each. It seemed like everyone enjoyed their food on both sides. I was expecting Christina to win, didn't think he'd choose Petrozza because of his age and lack of authority in the kitchen.

                  2. b
                    baltodog Jul 9, 2008 04:29 AM

                    Found Ramsay's choice hard to believe, hard to understand for many reasons, at least given the material aired on the program. Is Ramsay playing hanky-panky with Christina? Seems like she's had lots of goodies foisted on her throughout the season for her repeated "wins" on the challenges. Something stinks here.

                    1. Withnail42 Jul 9, 2008 04:56 AM

                      The code for ageism was the first thing that jumped out at me. I was sure all along that he was going to pick her. To me at least, they really made it seem like he had a better service. In the end he had to chose better the cute twenty something girl or the chubby balding 47 year old guy for his trendy LA flagship. Was the outcome ever really in doubt?

                      Hope good things are in store for Petrozza. He seems like a genuinely nice guy who can cook. He looked so defeated last night that he was havening trouble standing up.

                      I did watch this entire episode but have lost so much interest that for the last few weeks I had completely forgotten that it was even on. Season 5? Whatever no longer really bothered or interested in HK.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: Withnail42
                        s
                        sommrluv Jul 9, 2008 05:14 AM

                        Obviously, we're watching a highly edited program.

                        But they've edited Petroza in such a light to make him seem highly incompetent. The program I viewed last night showed a flustered man, carried by Bobbie and Ramsey.

                        When he ran out of not just one, but two appetizers, he floundered about, than said...Bobby get me something. Yes, Bobby is the Sous Chef. But Petrozza now has no ownership of that dish, nor that save, or how well it can fit in in the procession of dishes. And it's not that grand a dish, as they've been making risotto's all season.

                        Ramsey had to FORCE him to reign Jen in. And than Ramsey again had to force him to accept help in plating.

                        Now Ramsey also stepped in and yelled at Matt. I think he was telling her to fire Matt, and Personally, who wouldn't want to yell at Matt a few last times? What a numpty. I saw one steak come back cold..did I miss more dishes?

                        I'm also curious, they didn't show the sweetbreads at all, I wonder if they went down okay from Petrozza's standpoint..it takes some doing to get those perfect. Personally, I would have picked a safe, simple menu knowing I would get a wildcard crew. And Ramsey likes simple food.

                        1. re: Withnail42
                          Firegoat Jul 9, 2008 05:47 AM

                          I beleive season 5 has already been filmed. I remember them announcing doing both of them around the same time back during the writer's strike. And someone here on the board's said they were a "customer" during on of the season 5 services. As disappointed as I was in the P man not winning..... I'll watch it agin.

                        2. jfood Jul 9, 2008 06:22 AM

                          Since jfood predicted C, it was no surprise at the outcome. Nor does jfood believe that the final episode was the deciding factor.

                          - C won way more challenges than P, remember P stating last week "I really needed one!"
                          - If it were close, running out of 2 of 3 apps, was another nail in the coffin
                          - Handling Jen and Bobby. jfood thinks that was noise to the decision and the editors had more fun with showing it than probably happened. The audience saw maybe 2 minutes in a 2.5 hour service
                          - Like others jfood would have liked to know the input from the crowd. it may have been overwhelming for C, making it easy, or overwhlmingly for P in which case it would have been embarassing to then choose C
                          - The age comment was uncalled for but does not strike jfood as anything other than GR pontificating
                          - The decor of P's restaurant was horrible. C's was definitely better and even with the "stripe" issue.
                          - All the audience knows is that 2 dishes came back to C, but no one knows if any came back to P. It would be interesting how JP handled the guests who had their apps switched. And just a point of reference, when they ran out of apps and switched to risotto, how the heck did they make that in under 30 minutes, did they use minute rice?
                          - Jfood felt so bad for P when his door did not open. Did everyone catch GR rushing to him in the background as C walked through the door?
                          - Another blunder that seemed glossed over so far on the boards is C's instrcution to Numnuts, "Just take a few pieces of the thin tail and get me the monkfish.". If jfood receives the tail of the fish at dinner, that puppy goes back.

                          Other highlights -
                          - Jen asking for a reference. That is the subject of a whole thread on CH that will keep the Mods busy 24/7
                          - Matt singing and muttering. Can't make this up.
                          - P asking for 1 onion ring. Jen brings a fall-aparter, then brings a plateful.
                          - Kudos to LR, Bobby, Ben and Corey. Let's not forget these four people who really stepped up with a lot of class in the end.

                          So another season in the can. And given some of the reviews jfood has seen on CH about GR's LA place, it has some room to grow and get better.

                          5 Replies
                          1. re: jfood
                            kprange Jul 9, 2008 06:32 AM

                            I actually shed a tear when P lost. He has come across as such a nice giving person. I felt that C should have won, but P lost so gracefully.

                            1. re: jfood
                              LindaWhit Jul 9, 2008 07:16 AM

                              Re: jfood's other highlights:

                              - Jen actually ASKED for a reference? I missed that one!
                              - Matt has definitely jumped into the deep end. The amount of wackness coming out of him was simply astounding.
                              - I personally think Jen deliberately brought up the limp onion ring.
                              - As for Bobby - the voiceover of General Bobby still irked me no end, but he did step up to help Petrozza. But as someone else said - it was HIS risotto that saved Petrozza after P's bad prep resulted in the app station not being fully prepped to serve enough appetizers.
                              - I was still a bit surprised at Corey helping Christina so much. They had butted heads a lot early on, but I guess they both got over it. Jen on that team would have definitely sunk Christina.

                              1. re: jfood
                                Cpt Wafer Jul 9, 2008 03:03 PM

                                >Jfood felt so bad for P when his door did not open. Did everyone catch GR rushing to him in the background as C walked through the door?

                                I saw that. GR couldn't get over there fast enough. I felt P's disappointment, too. You work your whole life to be upstaged by someone roughly half your age fresh out of school. That's not to say C wasn't the best choice. Just not mine.

                                1. re: Cpt Wafer
                                  jfood Jul 9, 2008 03:34 PM

                                  according to some sites (referenced below) jfood gave GR a little too much credit. It appears that the door malfunctions and it also opened. GR had to go grab P before he also walked through the door.

                                  jfood was waiting for Jen to pull an Alex Haig moment and jump up the stairs and scream "I am the Winner!!!"

                                  1. re: jfood
                                    Cpt Wafer Jul 9, 2008 05:06 PM

                                    "As of know I'm in charge here." Wonder if she got her letter.

                                    I'm right down the road from P. I hope he does something in the future that I can check out.

                              2. yumyum Jul 9, 2008 08:42 AM

                                I'm glad that Christina won -- she deserved it. She won the majority of the challenges, she clearly has a great palate and is learning the leadership skills. Petrozza was a graceful loser, and I didn't care for the thinly veiled ageism either, but from day one he was a slob and a bit of a doofus.

                                I thought Matt was the real wild card in the finale -- Jen had a sour look on her face all night, but Matt was actively blowing it. If I was Christina, I wouldn't have been able to hug it out at the end, but she is obviously a bigger man than me.

                                1. bigmackdaddy Jul 9, 2008 09:54 AM

                                  Petrozza will be alright. If he plays his cards right he can end up with his won tv show. viewers see him as amicable, humorous and inventive. At first I was surprised at Christine getting over as well. Thinking about it however I'm not sure how age cannot come into play. I'm close to that age. I'd die to work for Ramsay myself, at the same time I'd also look into going in for business on my own after I hung around and learned a few things for a few years. From what I understand Ramsay has a very low turn over rate but it's with employees who start out young. And Christina has shown talent to the point where she can improve if she pays attention. I can dig Ramsay's point of his "long term" remark. This is a man who is very successful with three Michellins and has proven time and again he knows how to run a business. So something should be said about his intuition. I don't believe for a second he's going to choose someone to represent him because he/she has a nice butt. And like I said I'm not worried about Petrozza. Looking at his fan base my guess is some tv exec will throw him a show. He may just be the real winner of this thing after all.

                                  6 Replies
                                  1. re: bigmackdaddy
                                    LindaWhit Jul 9, 2008 10:03 AM

                                    Regarding the age issue - at the high level intensity with which GR's restaurants probably push out the total number of covers a night, how long does anyone think that Petrozza would last? Even Anthony Bourdain said working a line (even as a sous) after 15-20 years at the same level as when he started would be nigh on impossible.

                                    1. re: LindaWhit
                                      m
                                      maisonbistro Jul 9, 2008 10:38 AM

                                      Well, then why bother casting anyone over a certain age?? I mean honestly, if Gordon doesn't think that someone over a certain age has room to grow and learn, then why bother casting a 46 year old - much less letting him be in the final? That's what pisses me off about certain reality shows. I remember watching the last episode of the Apprentice (NOT the celebrity version), where in the end, the Donald picked someone who had more experience and a better eduction - ummm, I don't get it. Isn't it the performance on the show that counts? Isn't that what decides who stays and goes every week?

                                      I do know that there are not too many ECs over a certain age, only because it's a really rough life, usually (and of course there are exceptions) there is a long road to get there, up the lines, and the body can only take so much - I heard AB say that here in Montreal when he was doing his book tour - he admits he doesn't have it in him anymore, and that restaurant cooking is a young man's game.

                                      So again, if age and lack of malleability were a big factor for GR - why was Petrozza there?

                                      I think Petrozza would have done a fine job, and really felt for him when his door failed to open. That said, Christina honestly looked shocked that hers did.

                                      Good luck to both of them,

                                      1. re: maisonbistro
                                        LindaWhit Jul 9, 2008 11:51 AM

                                        Well, then why bother casting anyone over a certain age??
                                        ~~~~~
                                        Drama. And I sincerely doubt GR has anything to say about who's cast in the show. He just shows up for taping and says hello to the latest group of numbnuts. ;-)

                                        maisonbistro, I'm not disagreeing with you. But I'm taking it with a grain of fleur de sel. It' a non-reality show. All bets are off when it comes to the "whys" of casting.

                                        ETA: I don't think that GR didn't think that Petrozza could grow and learn, nor do I think that - he obviously did! The first show - I thought he was out of there within a few episodes! But the factor of being able to keep up in a busy kitchen on a day-in/day-out basis - perhaps that was the factor that gave the edge to Christina.

                                        I also thought that perhaps Christina thought that Petrozza won - her shocked face was evident of that. And I also felt for Petrozza. But I just think that, overall, Christina did a better overall job throughout the season than Petrozza did, and deserved to win.

                                        1. re: LindaWhit
                                          Miss Needle Jul 9, 2008 01:28 PM

                                          Yes. People really need to realize that the main purpose for these shows is entertainment -- not to find the absolute best chef for Gordon Ramsey's restaurant or to find the absolute best host for Food Network, etc. I read somewhere that said there were a lot of highly qualified people auditioning for Hell's Kitchen and they were rejected for the show. People are not primarily chosen for their talent. Their cooking skills are just a factor in the selection process. And I have a feeling that Fox would rather see more contestants who can't cook their way out of a kitchen so that Ramsey will yell at them more, creating more drama.

                                          And Jen is a reality show producer's wet dream. I couldn't stand her, but I couldn't stop laughing at her antics.

                                    2. re: bigmackdaddy
                                      kprange Jul 9, 2008 10:06 AM

                                      I didn't really take his remark as agism. I took it that while she lacks experience, she has the talent and the drive to learn and grow, just as she did on the show. I usually read too much into things, but I completely missed agism. I thought she did a much better job, based on what we saw.

                                      1. re: kprange
                                        d
                                        dingey Jul 9, 2008 11:18 AM

                                        Even though Christina's going to be the executive chef at the new restaurant, it's still Ramsay's name on the marquee. I wouldn't be surprised if he figured that it's easier to mold and shape a younger, less experienced chef to fit the exact model that he wants for his venture. Also, she did show a lot of growth and willingness to learn from her mistakes throughout, which is a big up. Still, it just seemed like P really did pull it out of his heinie for the final, and pulled off a complicated menu. Poor guy. I really liked him and his crazy triangle eyebrows.

                                    3. Firegoat Jul 9, 2008 11:40 AM

                                      Here is kind of an interesting interview with Petrozza
                                      http://www.tvfodder.com/archives/2008...

                                      I'm still waiting for the post elimination interview. But it is good to know they give them psychological test ahead of time.... the question I have tho after seeing Matt is... is that test to include or exclude?

                                      4 Replies
                                      1. re: Firegoat
                                        yumyum Jul 9, 2008 11:58 AM

                                        You made me LOL.

                                        1. re: Firegoat
                                          bigmackdaddy Jul 9, 2008 12:13 PM

                                          His "hen in a pumpkin" signature dish still cracks me up.

                                          1. re: Firegoat
                                            LindaWhit Jul 9, 2008 12:30 PM

                                            Fun interview. I liked reading about his signature dish:

                                            “When Fox asked for some of my signature recipes, one I sent in was Hen in Pumpkin. What can I say, I was drinking a little,” laughs Petrozza. “But you know what, even though Ramsay didn’t like it, I still like it and I’d put in on a menu someday as a fall dish. I think it got me on the show though, because they were probably thinking ‘we gotta get this guy on here just so we can see Ramsay break [him]!”

                                            1. re: LindaWhit
                                              Firegoat Jul 9, 2008 12:47 PM

                                              http://www.buddytv.com/articles/hells...

                                              Another interview where he explains about the sweetbreads.

                                          2. Withnail42 Jul 9, 2008 12:11 PM

                                            Some people have wondered about seeing post competition comments by Jen. I don't think that is going to happen as she is probably still ranting and raving about how it should have been her.

                                            15 Replies
                                            1. re: Withnail42
                                              Firegoat Jul 9, 2008 12:16 PM

                                              Here is one of the post competition interviews from Petrozza.
                                              OMG... the door malfunction. That just breaks my heart.
                                              http://www.orato.com/arts-entertainme...

                                              1. re: Firegoat
                                                rockandroller1 Jul 9, 2008 12:29 PM

                                                OMG the door malfunction, that is AWFUL!

                                                1. re: rockandroller1
                                                  Firegoat Jul 9, 2008 12:31 PM

                                                  It's bad enough to lose.... but to turn the handle and think that you won..... and the door opens and your family is down below.

                                                  That is just cruel. I can't imagine it.

                                                  1. re: Firegoat
                                                    m
                                                    maisonbistro Jul 9, 2008 12:38 PM

                                                    Try to imagine, and I know this is really hard because you have to first accept the initial premise - BUT try to imagine that happening to Jen. She's up against Christina or Corey as one of the final two, they're standing up there waiting to turn the handle and hold on - both open.

                                                    See - I shoulda won. It was Christina's fault I didn't win - and the stupid carpenter - I am the best chef - see, even the door knows it. Where's my lawyer. Can you say multimillion dollar lawsuit????

                                                    1. re: maisonbistro
                                                      Firegoat Jul 9, 2008 12:41 PM

                                                      I could totally see her suing for intention infliction of emotional distress.

                                                2. re: Firegoat
                                                  LindaWhit Jul 9, 2008 12:37 PM

                                                  Oh now THAT just sucks! I did see GR go over to Petrozza and hug him and tell him it would be alright. Awwwww....

                                                  But I do see even he says "You know, Ramsay approached it as an interview, and he had to make an investment in a future chef. If it were me – a 47-year-old guy – how much do you have left? "

                                                  Plus he also knows he should have come down harder on Jen. I just would have fired both her and Matt right off the bat. I think both kitchens would have run more smoothly!

                                                  1. re: LindaWhit
                                                    Firegoat Jul 9, 2008 01:14 PM

                                                    I just saw a 41-42 year old swimmer break a record and qualify for the olympics.
                                                    I sat in law school with 55 year olds going back for a new career.
                                                    A 47 year old guy is the perfect age.

                                                    1. re: Firegoat
                                                      LindaWhit Jul 9, 2008 01:36 PM

                                                      Hey - I'm coming up on 50yo, but I just don't think you can compare the 3 careers in the same way.

                                                      The swimmer is in incredible shape - she spends 6 hours a day training and has been doing that for a long time (training). (And I'm thrilled to hear she broke the record and qualified!) Petrozza is not in shape, and the stress of a high-intensity kitchen like London-West Hollywood can't be easy on people half his age.

                                                      The 55yo in your law school training for a new career - exercising their minds, and while people tend to learn more slowly as they age, it's still doable. But again - it's a different type of work and stress.

                                                      And it *was* Petrozza who said that about himself in regard to GR's decision to go with Christina. Is he trying to rationalize it to himself and readers? Perhaps.

                                                  2. re: Firegoat
                                                    Withnail42 Jul 9, 2008 02:33 PM

                                                    Oh...that is painful. That must have really hurt.

                                                    1. re: Firegoat
                                                      goodhealthgourmet Jul 9, 2008 04:44 PM

                                                      ugh, that door malfunction was really unfortunate. poor petrozza! but it does explain something about the promos. i was trying to see if they were giving away the ending by airing the clip of the hands waiting to turn the handles - if one handle turns & the other doesn't, oops, *major* spoiler...but in the clip they both moved, so i was stumped.

                                                      if petrozza ever had a prayer of winning [which i really don't think he did], he dug his own grave by choosing jen. she's a nightmare. he's right, he should have gone ballistic on her. the same goes for christina with matt. she was waaayy too tolerant of his lunacy and incompetence. if either of those clowns had been on my team, i would have tossed their worthless asses out of my kitchen so fast, their heads would STILL be spinning [though jen's probably does anyway, a la 'the exorcist.'].

                                                    2. re: Withnail42
                                                      Firegoat Jul 9, 2008 12:36 PM

                                                      and now a Christina interview.
                                                      http://blogs.riverfronttimes.com/gutc...

                                                      now I am more sad.

                                                      1. re: Firegoat
                                                        LindaWhit Jul 9, 2008 12:59 PM

                                                        Why more sad?

                                                        And I love that she has no idea who Regis Philbin is. :-) And she's already been to Dubai.

                                                        1. re: LindaWhit
                                                          Firegoat Jul 9, 2008 01:11 PM

                                                          I dunno. Just a vibe I got from that whole interview. Like St. Louis wouldn't be ready for a completely seasonal restaurant. Or where they grow their own food. We have that in Tulsa and we're more backwater than St. Louis.

                                                          I'd love to see Petrozza's take on the Dubai experience compared to hers. ... particularly as she didn't know where Dubai was prior to going.

                                                          1. re: Firegoat
                                                            Withnail42 Jul 9, 2008 02:45 PM

                                                            I don't know what was so sad about it.

                                                            I thought it odd that an early twenty something doesn't know about Myspace. Not that she needed a page but figured she'd have known all about it. Perhaps she was joking about Regis.

                                                            1. re: Withnail42
                                                              goodhealthgourmet Jul 9, 2008 05:01 PM

                                                              i think there was a sarcastic bent to her comments about myspace AND regis. she's actually pretty funny - i liked the paris hilton comment about her glasses & dog. and i didn't think her comments about st. louis & what she wants to do were sad, but rather matter-of-fact. she's right about it not being the proper economic climate for opening a place off the beaten path that requires people to drive long distances to get to...hello, $4+ per gallon for gas!

                                                    3. Firegoat Jul 9, 2008 02:42 PM

                                                      Gordon, lay off the tanning beds with the little glasses- I've told you before, in some shots you have raccoon eyes and look like a bufoon. I still love ya though.

                                                      Maison, I heard this before too. I didn't think it looked like a tanning bed mark either time. Looks more to me like he's in a state with great snow skiing, and as active as he is, those are goggles marks. If those were tanning bed marks i can't imagine makeup wouldn't cover them up. I always liked my skiing racoon eyes, like a badge of honor, so I can see leaving them. I have no idea if that is the case, but that is my speculation considering they obviously didn't try to cover it when they could have.

                                                      1. h
                                                        HarryK Jul 9, 2008 03:09 PM

                                                        >>> Considering that none of the previous winners are still at their "won" post, does promise really mean anything? Not sure.

                                                        Thought Roc was. No? (Unsure now. Thought he was.)

                                                        2 Replies
                                                        1. re: HarryK
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                                                          maisonbistro Jul 9, 2008 03:20 PM

                                                          Harry, if you check Wikipedia, you'll see that none of the winners are still in the jobs they won. They say that Rock is in promotions or something like that- not in the kitchen. Weird huh?

                                                          1. re: maisonbistro
                                                            h
                                                            HarryK Jul 10, 2008 06:42 AM

                                                            Thanks, maisonbistro. Weird if he's in promotions yeah! The more I think about it though with $100-250K for the first year salary ... Who would want to stay more than that first year? They have the added experience, they have working for GR on their resume and winning the show, they have the money ... time for them to open their own restaurant or whatever their dreams are at that point!

                                                        2. h
                                                          HarryK Jul 9, 2008 03:19 PM

                                                          Speaking of age, people, let us not forget, Ramsay is very nearly Petrozza's age himself.

                                                          2 Replies
                                                          1. re: HarryK
                                                            Withnail42 Jul 9, 2008 03:39 PM

                                                            Nope. Ramsay is in his early forties. However he looks a lot older.

                                                            1. re: Withnail42
                                                              h
                                                              HarryK Jul 10, 2008 06:44 AM

                                                              Eh, 41 to 47 isn't *that* big of a leap ... but yeah, I hear ya. :)

                                                          2. meatn3 Jul 10, 2008 12:36 AM

                                                            As a person closer in age to Petrozza I just did not take GR comment as ageism. I felt the comment reflected on the fact that Christina did so well at such an unseasoned point in her career. If she is at that level just starting, then think where she will be after a few years out in the field.

                                                            Christina generally kept a steady head on her shoulders, handled the personalities well in the final show down, and was extremely organized. The only time she didn't seem steady was when the restaurant design wasn't what she had expected, but she was able to prioritize and move on rapidly.

                                                            Petrozza was not portrayed as that organized (ran out of apps), didn't think quickly on feet in crisis, and got overly involved in minutia when plating.

                                                            I think the attributes that help him in catering may have worked against him on the line.

                                                            The plus of the whole thing was that they both were gracious people and behaved with class.

                                                            Jen and Matt were just mind boggling. She has the intelligence and skills to do well if she can ever lobotomize her ego. Matt just became very scary. He should not work with knives...

                                                            8 Replies
                                                            1. re: meatn3
                                                              h
                                                              HarryK Jul 10, 2008 06:46 AM

                                                              >>> Matt just became very scary. He should not work with knives...

                                                              Or near fire ... or things that could end up causing pandemics ... or .... :-)

                                                              1. re: meatn3
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                                                                Leonardo Jul 10, 2008 07:56 AM

                                                                Just because Christina did so well considering her young age, it doesn't logically follow that she is destined for great things. Some people reach their peak in their 20's! And she's not a "culinary school graduate"; she's just a student at an unnamed school according to Hell's Kitchen official website bio. St Louis Community College? Some grossly overpriced private school degree mill? And I'm acquainted with chefs who would never hire a graduate, unless it were a truly elite school.

                                                                As a person close to Petrozza's age and someone who has heard nearly identical phrases and explanations as to why I lost out to someone younger, that is why I am so adamant in shouting "ageism" in this case. If they won't realistically consider anyone so old/fat/bald for the job, they should be like "Idol" and restrict entries to under-30.

                                                                1. re: Leonardo
                                                                  Miss Needle Jul 10, 2008 08:11 AM

                                                                  As I noted below, she's a graduate of the CIA -- probably considered the top culinary school in the States. And I do know graduates of the CIA who have worked at top tier restaurants as line cooks straight out of school.

                                                                  Another article that is linked to the link says that Ramsey states the executive chef is in title only. He says he would never trust a winner of one of his shows to run a multi-million dollar operation.

                                                                  1. re: Miss Needle
                                                                    LindaWhit Jul 10, 2008 09:26 AM

                                                                    I was just going to post the link to that comment by Ramsay:

                                                                    "Do you honestly think, my sweet pea, that I'm going to be that stupid and that vulnerable? That I would stick my ass to the window and give one of them a chance to run that restaurant, which is a multi-million [dollar] investment? One of them will be part of an amazing team, put in the deep end. But they will definitely not be running the room." For the record, the winner will be called an executive chef, but in fact will be one of 65 chefs responsible for all hotel meals, including breakfast, lunch, high tea and dinner..."

                                                                    http://www.seriouseats.com/required_e...

                                                                    1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                      h
                                                                      HarryK Jul 10, 2008 11:36 AM

                                                                      You know what. Saw that the other day. Serious Eats says the quote came from the NY Post. Did a search of the Post. Could not find it.

                                                                      I would love to see the actual source, because until I do I am uncertain if that is a made-up quote, a quote from a parody site, or in fact Ramsay's. The fact Serious Eats does not link to the source makes me wonder even more so.

                                                                      Yes, I'm a skeptic. What can I tell ya? :)

                                                                      1. re: HarryK
                                                                        LindaWhit Jul 10, 2008 12:11 PM

                                                                        Go forth and be a skeptic no more, Harry. ;-)

                                                                        http://www.nypost.com/seven/07062008/...

                                                                        Scroll down about halfway (although there are no paragraph breaks - I guess the NY Post doesn't want to pay for them online. <g>) And he calls Christina a "gritty, feisty little cow"! LOL I'm going to assume that's a term of endearment. ;-)

                                                                        I Googled part of the text from the quote on Seriouseats to find the quote. However, the title of the article is certainly misleading!

                                                                        1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                          h
                                                                          HarryK Jul 10, 2008 12:28 PM

                                                                          Linda, you rock! *smooch*

                                                                          Btw, you gotta wonder about this ...

                                                                          Christina Machamer, 25, the culinary school student? "She's a very gritty, feisty little cow," he enthuses.

                                                                          Imagine that, in Gordon-speak that's apparently very complimentary.

                                                                  2. re: Leonardo
                                                                    Firegoat Jul 10, 2008 08:59 AM

                                                                    Both Petrozza and Christina graduated from the same CIA school.

                                                                2. f
                                                                  Fuser Jul 10, 2008 12:56 AM

                                                                  When I saw the big picture of Christina and she said, "wow a BIG picture of me" or something like that. Gordon just couldn't stomach a huge picture of Petrozza. Plus this "executive chef" seems like a big PR stunt. There's no way in HELL Gordon Ramsey is going to entrust one of his restaurants to a 25-year-old culinary school grad no matter how "promising" she is. The younger, cuter girl plays much better than the chubby middle-aged man.

                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                  1. re: Fuser
                                                                    kprange Jul 10, 2008 04:53 AM

                                                                    I think people need to find controversy in anything, First and foremost, this is a show that entertains. The person who did the best job on the show won. If you watched the show with the chefs from his other restaurants, you would realize that she will work for someone, not run the kitchen on her own.

                                                                  2. f
                                                                    Fydeaux Jul 10, 2008 07:22 AM

                                                                    As I have an associative interest is seeing short, chubby, balding, middle-aged men succeed, I was disappointed in the outcome. Plus, I personally think that Petrozza (Isnt his fist name really Louie? Why didnt they call him that?) handled Jen marginally better than Christina handled Matt.

                                                                    But from what I have read from non-showbiz/publicity flack sources, Ramsay's employees are for the most part very loyal and tend to stay with him a long time. With that possibility, if not liklihood, Christina as the younger and more maleable of the two is probably the better choice. Plus Ramsay is notorious for his intolerance of chefs who are slobs, in or out of the kitchen. As much as Petrozza's slovenliness was mentioned, I am kind of surprised that even more was not made of this. I really think that this factored in to the decision.

                                                                    The saying about old age and treachery VS youth and speed is a favourite of mine, and is usually the way to bet. But Petrozza wasnt treacherous in any respect. (In the first season, didnt one of the contestants hide some filets or something from another contestant? Petrozza NEVER would have done something like that.)

                                                                    I hope there is a future in the showbiz side for Petrozza; I would gladly watch him as the host of a cooking/travel/interview show.

                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                    1. re: Fydeaux
                                                                      LindaWhit Jul 10, 2008 07:49 AM

                                                                      Perhaps they called Petrozza by his last name because there was also Lou-Ross? Although I think Christina said in one of her interviews she had just gotten an Email from "Lou". So perhaps Petrozza is his "stage name." :-)

                                                                    2. Miss Needle Jul 10, 2008 07:54 AM

                                                                      Turns out that Christina graduated from the CIA. The CIA has put out a lot of reality show winners.

                                                                      http://www.seriouseats.com/required_e...

                                                                      And there's a disturbing article linked to the above link where it says that Gordon Ramsey weighs in his chefs each time they enter the kitchen. I wonder if that may have also been a factor as to why Petrozza lost. Of course, I think the main reason Ramsey picked Christina is that he sees more potential in her.

                                                                      29 Replies
                                                                      1. re: Miss Needle
                                                                        Firegoat Jul 10, 2008 09:06 AM

                                                                        wow.
                                                                        that was an interesting read.

                                                                        1. re: Firegoat
                                                                          d
                                                                          Docsknotinn Jul 11, 2008 04:03 AM

                                                                          IIR Gordon was over weight as a kid. Now as a full grown goat he is pretty driven by health.
                                                                          Two things I think are interesting at the end of the season.
                                                                          I personally feel the show owes P $250k. The rules are simple. You survive and your door opens then you win. P's door opened and I very much doubt it was a malfunction of any sort. If it was they wouldn't have aired the door knobs turning. Just more reality show hype.
                                                                          The other thing I'm still rolling about is Christina saying it's over and she will never have to work this hard again. LOL
                                                                          If only she had a clue.
                                                                          In the end the CIA gets another notch for reality show winners. O joy. Another whole batch of culinary students who think being a chef is all glamor and big bucks.
                                                                          Does any one think C will have a job after a year?

                                                                          1. re: Docsknotinn
                                                                            kprange Jul 11, 2008 04:25 AM

                                                                            I don't really think the door opened. Knobs turn all the time when they are locked, only one door was unlocked. We have doors like that at school - the knobs or handles turn, but nothing happened. There can only be one winner - P ran out of food and over all didn't do quite as good a job as C. I don't think it had anything to do with agism - if it did, he would have never made it as far as he did.

                                                                            1. re: kprange
                                                                              Firegoat Jul 11, 2008 05:00 AM

                                                                              I don't really think the door opened

                                                                              According to the post show interview both doors did open. Which explains the edited part where you see Ramsay run to Petrozza and grab/hug him.

                                                                              1. re: Firegoat
                                                                                s
                                                                                sibeats Jul 11, 2008 08:19 PM

                                                                                I'm not arguing whether or not the door opened, but in all the past HK's, Gordon always goes to the loser to console them while the winner goes down the staircase. So I wouldn't base anything on that.

                                                                            2. re: Docsknotinn
                                                                              jfood Jul 11, 2008 04:57 AM

                                                                              D

                                                                              jfood doubts the contracts that the contestents signed stated that an open door = 250k, probably had a few more caveats. and jfood thinks that's the salary that C will receive for her gig in LA.

                                                                              jfood will raise a hand that C will have a job after a year, and one better than most of her classmates. being trained by GR for a year is worth as much, if not more, than her CIA diploma.

                                                                              Likewise P is probably in higher demand than previously as well as Bobby and Corey.

                                                                              Jfood also understands that Matt and Jen are auditioning for the Broadway version of Shrek. Hey remember the thread on humor on CH?

                                                                              1. re: jfood
                                                                                Firegoat Jul 11, 2008 05:01 AM

                                                                                While C probably won't be working at the London, I'm sure she'll be working. Both her and P have a CIA education, and both can bring some "star quality" to a restaurant. I don't think either one will have a problem finding a job. I'm curious whether P will stay at the university he started working for after he lost his job for going on the show, or try something new.

                                                                                As far as Jen.... the way the FN network is going downhill with shrill/annoying hosts that don't have much cooking skills, I could totally see a future for her there if they drop a little weight off her and get her a push up bra.

                                                                                1. re: Firegoat
                                                                                  d
                                                                                  Docsknotinn Jul 11, 2008 05:28 AM

                                                                                  I could totally see a future for her there if they drop a little weight off her and get her a push up bra.
                                                                                  ==============================================
                                                                                  Trying NOT to get a visual on that but her voice couldn't be any more annoying than RR who narrates here show in a tone like a Yogi Bear cartoon with the exagerated emphASis in every sentence. I keep waiting for her to say;
                                                                                  Hey Boo boo, Theese are not raisens in my raisen bran!

                                                                                  1. re: Firegoat
                                                                                    h
                                                                                    HarryK Jul 11, 2008 07:58 AM

                                                                                    Don't even kid about tht, Firegoat. That's just too cruel. To us.

                                                                                  2. re: jfood
                                                                                    d
                                                                                    Docsknotinn Jul 11, 2008 05:21 AM

                                                                                    Jfood also understands that Matt and Jen are auditioning for the Broadway version of Shrek
                                                                                    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
                                                                                    LOL Thanks for the morning laugh....LOL
                                                                                    I agree on the contracts. Just opining. While I think C won fair and square I feel bad for P because of the door incident.
                                                                                    Corey and C should do very well in the future.

                                                                                    1. re: Docsknotinn
                                                                                      jfood Jul 11, 2008 05:53 AM

                                                                                      yup, ibid ibid ibid bid.

                                                                                      if that door open it is the perfect (and unfortunate imperfect) snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.

                                                                                      Good weekend Doc

                                                                                      1. re: jfood
                                                                                        Firegoat Jul 11, 2008 07:25 AM

                                                                                        http://www.realitytvworld.com/news/ex...

                                                                                        an interview that explains about those ducks and sweetbreads we never heard of again.

                                                                                        1. re: Firegoat
                                                                                          jfood Jul 11, 2008 07:36 AM

                                                                                          jfood really liked P. but now he's working for Aramark, what a shame and a loss to a local place that he could open.

                                                                                          1. re: Firegoat
                                                                                            LindaWhit Jul 11, 2008 10:15 AM

                                                                                            Wow -Petrozza really rips into Jen, doesn't he?

                                                                                            "One person actually brought it to my attention that Ramsay didn't like Jen so much that it almost put the hex on my whole team. You know, I could see that underlying, subconscious dislike for her horrible, horrible attitude and mean-spirited self. I could see how that could put a scowl on the whole team from the beginning without us doing a darn thing. "

                                                                                            Disappointed to hear he's working for Aramark, however. :-(

                                                                                    2. re: Docsknotinn
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                                                                                      Leonardo Jul 11, 2008 07:53 AM

                                                                                      I seriously doubt the rules are so simple as "the door opens = $250k".
                                                                                      I was on two game shows. The contract disclaimers and releases are numerous concerning errors and malfunctions. If there is a hitch, the producers reserve all rights to arbitrate the result, with no legal recourse for the contestant.

                                                                                      1. re: Leonardo
                                                                                        jfood Jul 11, 2008 11:14 AM

                                                                                        "arbitrate"? jfood would have guessed "in their sole discretion".

                                                                                        1. re: jfood
                                                                                          l
                                                                                          Leonardo Jul 11, 2008 04:49 PM

                                                                                          Yeah that's what I meant. It's been a few years since my brush with fame. = )
                                                                                          I meant that the producers' arbitrary decisions are final and there is no legal recourse to challenge anything.

                                                                                          That P is doing corporate institutional food makes me sad too. He could have his own place with his personal stamp on it, his quirky warm-hearted presence, and fun creativity he brings to food.

                                                                                          1. re: Leonardo
                                                                                            bigmackdaddy Jul 11, 2008 05:08 PM

                                                                                            He needs money and/or backers for that. It hasn't been a week since the finale. Give him some time, you'll see.

                                                                                            1. re: Leonardo
                                                                                              m
                                                                                              maisonbistro Jul 11, 2008 05:48 PM

                                                                                              Just as Christina had to work in that restaurant in St. Louis, until the finale finally aired, Louis also had do something in the meantime. I am sure that now that the show is over he will get offers to have his own place.

                                                                                              1. re: maisonbistro
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                                                                                                myaco Jul 11, 2008 06:05 PM

                                                                                                Just want to add that corporate "food" organizations ala Aramark attract many experienced over 35 fine dining veterans. Its the benefits. 401Ks, health insurance, sometimes even reasonable hours. (Wasn't P a "catering manager" when the show started, and hadn't cooked on line for years? )

                                                                                                1. re: myaco
                                                                                                  s
                                                                                                  soupkitten Jul 11, 2008 06:49 PM

                                                                                                  . . . i agree that it is common for older chefs to go corporate for the benefits. . .

                                                                                                  1. re: myaco
                                                                                                    j
                                                                                                    jlawrence01 Jul 11, 2008 08:53 PM

                                                                                                    What a radical concept (going into Corporate dining). Real benefits, vacations, reasonable work hours ...

                                                                                                    1. re: jlawrence01
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                                                                                                      Leonardo Jul 11, 2008 09:55 PM

                                                                                                      ...compromise your values, artistic vision, individuality...what's not to love about that?

                                                                                                      1. re: Leonardo
                                                                                                        j
                                                                                                        jlawrence01 Jul 11, 2008 11:32 PM

                                                                                                        Right, like chefs preparing meals can show no creativity unless there running their own restaurant - what a lack of imagination.

                                                                                                        1. re: Leonardo
                                                                                                          d
                                                                                                          Docsknotinn Jul 12, 2008 03:07 AM

                                                                                                          What?
                                                                                                          As an "older chef" (over 35) I've worked for Aramark. Go ahead and call me a sell out but for once in my life I wanted to work M-F, no nights, no weekends, no holidays. I nearly wet myself the first time I got to walk around, pass out checks and tell every one I'd see them on Monday!
                                                                                                          Plus the kitchen was absolutly the shitizzle. Multiple steam kettles, Two walk in's, Tilt brazer, stacked convection ovens, Floor mixers, HUGE prep area, Multiple stoves including an 8 burner slate top, steamer etc etc. All with a glass front dining room over looking a lake. I could have easilly done a sit down dinner for several hundred out of that kitchen.
                                                                                                          Working for a corporation does not mean you have to compromise your values. I can easilly think of several independent establishments that have no vision or value.
                                                                                                          Either way I hope P finds something with a lot more financial promise than Arasmack.

                                                                                                          1. re: Docsknotinn
                                                                                                            s
                                                                                                            sommrluv Jul 14, 2008 10:41 AM

                                                                                                            What does aramark make? I'd never heard of them.

                                                                                                            1. re: sommrluv
                                                                                                              kprange Jul 14, 2008 11:15 AM

                                                                                                              http://www.aramark.com/Home.aspx?Post...

                                                                                                              1. re: sommrluv
                                                                                                                d
                                                                                                                Docsknotinn Jul 14, 2008 03:06 PM

                                                                                                                Aramark is a corporate dining contractor. They do every thing from the Olympics to hospitals to school cafaterias. The property I had was a secured building for executives and top management of a private corporation.

                                                                                                                1. re: Docsknotinn
                                                                                                                  j
                                                                                                                  jlawrence01 Jul 15, 2008 05:37 AM

                                                                                                                  That is generally the best deal in foodservice. No weekends, few evenings, no unrealistic budgets. A client that is willing to pay more and wants to see some flair.

                                                                                        2. j
                                                                                          jcattles Jul 15, 2008 09:22 AM

                                                                                          I can see why Chirstina won. She has a good head on her shoulders, she's not afraid to speak her mind and most of all she's trainable! Really, GR and his staff can train her to cook and work the way he expects. It's alot harder to teach an old dog new tricks. I don't think it's about who the best chef is. It's about who is the best chef for GR and his restaurants. Personally, I thought Petrozza had a better menu and more experience, but he's also more set in his ways. Either way, they both got great exposure and I'm sure thier futures will be better for it.

                                                                                          3 Replies
                                                                                          1. re: jcattles
                                                                                            bigmackdaddy Jul 15, 2008 01:38 PM

                                                                                            I disagree. P showed much willingness to learn and heed. I don't believe for one second did Mr. P argue with Ramsay on how things should be done. The only reason he should have lost was the fear of him being in his forties and then getting middle aged anxiety and running off to start his own place.

                                                                                            1. re: bigmackdaddy
                                                                                              kprange Jul 16, 2008 05:31 AM

                                                                                              I disagree completely. P didn't run his service as well as C did. He ran out of two apps. He never won a challenge until the end, and he always made mistakes during service. I really don't think it had anything to do with him being in his 40's. Otherwise he wouldn't have made it as far as he did - he would have been booted long before.

                                                                                              1. re: kprange
                                                                                                bigmackdaddy Jul 16, 2008 02:14 PM

                                                                                                Which other contestant do you feel besides C was better than P? And, Ramsay himself said he was looking at the long run when he chose the winner. I'm pretty sure if Ramsay felt that P didn't perform as well as he should have, or less than C he would have stated it. He certainly said it about everyone else.

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